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Cut Bills, Cut Carbon, Kick Start the Green Economy

South Lanarkshire Council can plot a path to save energy and boost the green economy

On December 7th, Cllr Kirsten Robb (Scottish Green Party, East Kilbride East), will present a motion to the full council setting out further steps to cut council fuel consumption, reduce carbon emissions and kick start the local green economy in South Lanarkshire. [link to the full text of the motion]

The motion asks the council to prepare a plan to reduce energy use where it is safe to do so and set high standards of energy efficiency for council new build projects. It is being proposed to help address the projected £7.45 million impact on the Council’s budget flowing from rising energy costs. It will also tackle fuel poverty, cut carbon emissions and kick start the local green economy.

Council properties are the largest source of the council’s carbon emissions. The motion calls for an energy use reduction plan for Council buildings, the adoption of the highest standards of energy efficiency in all Council funded buildings, a moratorium on fossil fuel heating systems in new Council builds going forward, an investigation into the logistics of retrofitting Council properties and housing where substantial savings can be made, and the development of a mechanism to share best practice with the private sector with a view to developing a “South Lanarkshire” standard of energy efficiency excellence. This will involve the development of an appropriate compliance system analogous to that used to ensure building safety standards are met.

It also commits the Council to formally adopt the “Fabric First” approach, which aims to minimise energy use by maximising energy efficiency. To ensure that this significant transition in energy use and generation provides local opportunities for all and helps to foster a fairer society, the motion commits the Council to working with local higher education establishments, Skills Development Scotland and business to identify gaps and opportunities for local people and businesses. Building on this, in the medium to long term, the motion commits the Council to exploring the establishment of a green economy skills academy and apprenticeship programme.

“By supporting this motion, councillors can ensure we save as much energy as we can this winter and long into the future. Every penny saved will go to the vital services the council provides.

“The council has also signed up to act on climate change and it’s important that councillors lead by setting our aspirations high. This is the start of ratcheting up work to create a greener, more secure future for South Lanarkshire residents and I’d be delighted to work with all councillors to do more.

“Other councils are delivering buildings with the highest standards of energy efficiency and are reaping the benefits to grow the local green economy. South Lanarkshire can too.”

Cllr Kirsten Robb

Motion text available here. The motion is seconded by Cllr Kirsten Robb’s fellow climate committee member, the SNP’s Cllr Ross Clark. Cllr Robb has also sought feedback on the motion from Labour and the Liberal Democrats as the administration.

We Can’t do This Without You!

We are asking you to email your councillors to ask them to support the motion. You can find your councillors here. We’ve created an email to make the task as simple as possible (this link will open your email client) you can edit the text if you like, but all you need to do is enter the email address and names.

You can help further by sharing the below image on social media

Graphic of the motion – please grab a copy and share on social media